Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part II
posted at 5/20/2011 3:40 PM EDT
In Response to Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part II
[QUOTE]Things I noticed during tonight's game. 1. I was astounded at the amount of pitches that Beckett shook off. It was always my thought that Becket and Varitek were joined at the hip and in the mind. If so, who so many shake off's? I noticed the same thing. It seemed way more than usual. Maybe Beckett was just feeling something. He looked great...again! 2. If not mistaken, I think is was Salty in the bullpen catching and chatting away with the pitchers. I view this as a good thing for him to understand their pitch preferences etc....getting to know the whole staff. I think he might be, at his age, more of a sponge than VMart was. I mean this in a good way for Salty. 3. A while back, I wrote that all will be forgotten if we win ten in a row...well, we're getting closer. How about 3 or 4- 6-7 game winning streaks bunched together? 4) (edit) Do we actively go after Paps? I love Paps and all he has done for us. I just have a philisophical difference of opinion on the worth of any closer. Almost every closer who signs a huge deal goes on to be a let down. While the closer is a vital role on a team, many teams have won with low cost closers. I had hoped Bard or Jenks could fill the role, but so far, they have not done much to convince me.
Posted by moonslav59[/QUOTE]A catcher liking and performing well with a catcher can often have little to do with the catcher taking the pitcher by the hand and leading him through the game while the pitcher thoughtlessly throws whatever the catcher calls. Beckett often shakes off Tek. Heck Buchholz at this point shakes off everyone. I think Tek should have gotten high fives the other night for getting Aceves to accept one of his initial calls.
The McCarver story with Carlton telling him on a visit to the mound that the only thing Tim knew about pitching was he could not hit it speaks to this. because while Carlton said that according to McCarver, he always wanted McCarver catching him, even with the great Bob Boone on the roster. Those two (Beckett and Tek) have great chemistry at this point and that is all that counts, the why of it we will never know for sure because Beckett might not even be able to explain it.
Bard's thing right now is he can get sloppy with his secondary pitches and when he does and the hitter is sitting on one they get hit really hard. And if all he throws is 98, most of his fastballs are on a string, so matter how fast if the hitter has seen enough and guesses right he has a decent chance to drive the ball. So Bard needs to use his two secondary pitches and if he isn't commanding them bad things can happen.
Hate to say it but in a way the inning points out it isn't just other catchers who have pitchers get a little too much of the plate, the hitter sitting on that pitch and the ball exiting the confines quickly. That reaction is what a few thousand catchers relevance posts will do I suppose (my bad, I know.)
Bard's eventually being a closer is yet to be seen. he bounces back from these tough outings well and that is a big part of being a closer because it is hard for a pitcher to accept when the game has been given to him to bring home after 8 innings of hard work by his teammates and he fails. To me greatness as a closer is at least 60% how they handle the occasional failure.
And whatever anyone wants to say about Papelbon, he's got the ability to go in shower and wash off a tough loss and come out the next night wanting the ball and believing he should have the ball.
The biggest difference for Papelbon this year to me is better command (look at the K to BB ratio). It sets up the split. And when he throws one split for a strike in an appearance to any batter, once he is up on the count on any proceeding batter, that guy might as well head back to the dugout.
Moon you are right that huge money for closers is a big risk but the lack of one is a sure way not to see post season. Tough call for the RS because getting the last 3 outs is special and more so on a team like the NYY or RS.